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Bean there: my love of fabada in Asturias, Spain – plus the recipe

The butter bean stew is Asturias’ signature dish, and treated with reverence at ‘one of the most special restaurants in Spain’Asturias is not the Spai

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The butter bean stew is Asturias’ signature dish, and treated with reverence at ‘one of the most special restaurants in Spain’

Asturias is not the Spain of your imagination. Don’t expect flamenco dresses, clacking castanets and jugs of sangria in this north-west province. Instead of tiny tapas bars, there are raucous cider houses. Instead of vineyards and sunbaked hills, there are apple orchards and a thousand shades of green.

This was a lesson I first learned from the chef and humanitarian José Andrés, born and raised in the Asturian mining town of Mieres. We travelled together on a surf-and-turf bender in his home region in 2010, soaking ourselves in Asturias cider, inventing meals to fill the interminable space between lunch and dinner.

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